This introduction argues that Hong Kong cinema and media are best understood as a public sphere, where affects associated with Hong Kongers’ extraterritorial position of being doubly occupied and ostracised by contesting sociopolitical forces are being negotiated. It first examines why the national/transnational debate on Hong Kong cinema falls short of helping us understand the core of the sociopolitical perturbation it seeks to locate. It then expounds the term ‘extraterritoriality’ from both theoretical and historical angles. With these in mind, this chapter studies Mandarin musical Chang xiangsi [An All-Consuming Love, He Zhaozhang, 1947] as an example of an extraterritorial cinematic and musical experience. Finally, it introduces the specific topics and case studies discussed in each chapter of this book.
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